No overall control

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In the context of local authorities in the United Kingdom, the term no overall control (abbreviated to NOC) refers to a situation in which no single political group achieves a majority of seats; and is analogous to a hung parliament. Of the 248 councils who had members up for election in the 2019 local elections, 73 (over a quarter) resulted in a NOC administration.

Local government in the United Kingdom has origins that pre-date the United Kingdom itself, as each of the four countries of the United Kingdom has its own separate system. For an overview, see Administrative geography of the United Kingdom. For details, see:

United Kingdom Country in Europe

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea separates Great Britain and Ireland. The United Kingdom's 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi) were home to an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.

A hung parliament is a term used in legislatures under the Westminster system to describe a situation in which no particular political party or pre-existing coalition has an absolute majority of legislators in a parliament or other legislature. This situation is also known, albeit less commonly, as a balanced parliament, or as a legislature under no overall control, and can result in a minority government. The term is not relevant in multi-party systems where it is rare for a single party to hold a majority.

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Administration in NOC councils

Typically, if no party achieves overall control of a council, the largest grouping will form alliances to create an ad hoc governing coalition. Often local authorities have larger proportions of smaller party and independent members than the House of Commons, and when there is no overall control this often results in minor groups having more influence than their numbers alone would suggest.

Ad hoc is a Latin phrase meaning literally "for this". In English, it generally signifies a solution designed for a specific problem or task, non-generalizable, and not intended to be able to be adapted to other purposes.

The term "coalition" is the denotation for a group formed when two or more people, factions, states, political parties, militaries etc. agree to work together temporarily in a partnership to achieve a common goal. The word coalition connotes a coming together to achieve a goal.

House of Commons of the United Kingdom Lower house in the Parliament of the United Kingdom

The House of Commons, officially the Honourable the Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled, is the lower house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Like the upper house, the House of Lords, it meets in the Palace of Westminster. Owing to shortage of space, its office accommodation extends into Portcullis House.

In the result of No-overall Control, the largest party may attempt to govern as a minority administration, such as the Conservatives in Dudley and Thurrock or Labour in Stockport and Brighton and Hove. Parties may also work together to create a formal deal, which can range from a confidence and supply deal to full coalition. Deals, especially the looser kind, can occur between parties which are not traditionally aligned on a national level. For example, a minority Conservative administration was formed in 2019 in Bolton supported by the Liberal Democrats and UKIP whilst a Labour-UKIP formal coalition exists in Basildon. However, following the 2017 Aberdeen City Council election, nine Labour councillors were expelled from the party for entering into a coalition with the Conservatives. Conversely, the two parties formed a coalition administration in Worcester following the 2019 elections.

Dudley town in West Midlands, England

Dudley is a large industrialised market town in the county of West Midlands, England, 6 miles (9.7 km) south-east of Wolverhampton and 10.5 miles (16.9 km) north-west of Birmingham. The town is the administrative centre of the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley and in 2011 had a population of 79,379. The Metropolitan Borough, which includes the towns of Stourbridge and Halesowen, had a population of 312,900. Dudley is sometimes called the capital of the Black Country.

Thurrock Borough & Unitary authority area in England

Thurrock is a unitary authority area with borough status in the English ceremonial county of Essex. It is part of the London commuter belt and an area of regeneration within the Thames Gateway redevelopment zone. The local authority is Thurrock Council.

Stockport town in Greater Manchester, England

Stockport is a large town in Greater Manchester, England, 7 miles (11 km) south-east of Manchester city centre, where the River Goyt and Tame merge to create the River Mersey, and the largest in the metropolitan borough of the same name.

It is possible for a council to be under no overall control even when there appears to be an overall majority, in particular in the case of a majority of independents, who commonly have no collective policies when elected. This can also arise when the council members divide on other than party lines. For instance, the 2004 elections to the Isle of Anglesey County Council returned more independents than all others put together, but only Plaid Cymru maintained a party group within the council, and not all of its elected members joined the group. The remainder of the council, including some members of other political parties, formed four non-partisan groups, none of which held a majority. However, the 2008 elections resulted in a group called the Original Independents gaining an overall majority.

2004 United Kingdom local elections

The United Kingdom local elections of 2004 were held on 10 June, as part of the 2004 set of elections along with the European elections and the London mayoral and Assembly elections.

Isle of Anglesey County Council British administrative body

The Isle of Anglesey County Council is the governing body for the county of Anglesey, one of the unitary authority areas of Wales. The council has 30 councillors who represent 11 multi-member electoral wards.

Plaid Cymru is a social-democratic political party in Wales advocating Welsh independence from the United Kingdom within the European Union.

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